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Monday, March 17, 2014

“Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to high sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.” —Peter Drucker

Who is the 'indispensable man" within your organization? Are you that key person? Can you become the leader who makes the difference in your business day in and day out for years?

This afternoon, I will attend the visitation for Bill ‘Chillie’ Childress, who was Bacon & Van Buskirk’s general manager, production manager and glazier for more than 50 years and three generations of family ownership. Chillie was a wild, ornery, outgoing, Arkansas-born kid who was raised in small-town Midwestern corn country, found discipline in the Marine Reserves and construction industry, and rose up through our ranks as shopman, glazier and into the office to become that Indispensable Man.

Known to enjoy his time off as much as he did his work, Chillie was a tall, gregarious, salty, larger-than-life S.O.B. who barely made it out of high school, and knew everyone in Central Illinois he ever met. Chillie loved the routine of rising early and jobbing out the glaziers, pushing the shopmen to get the trucks loaded towards the end of the day, and annoying and harassing the office staff. He loved being organized, telling hilarious stories, enjoying the attention to detail we must have in this business, and doing what he could to keep the general contractors happy.

Was Chillie perfect? No, and he’d be the first to say so. As a kid, he loved basketball but had to go to two different high schools to finish up. In his teen years, Chillie and his buddies would go out at night and get drunk. The next morning, my grandfather would have to go to his house to drag him into work. Chillie would sneak out his back window and beat my grandpa back to the shop, as if he had been there for awhile. In time, his humor, big personality, and the Marines helped bring out Chillie’s natural leadership qualities. When it was obvious he had a passion for the business, had found personal discipline, and had that unique trait that others looked up to, Chillie was given opportunities to learn the business…and he made the most of them.

Chillie’s consistent competitive drive, attention to detail, outgoing personality, desire to learn and day-to-day leadership made him that key person from the late 1960’s through the early 1990’s who helped take Bacon & Van Buskirk from a small paint and glass shop to a strong regional, commercial storefront, curtain-wall and window business.

If my grandfather and father had the vision and business acumen to buy the bus, and others sold the tickets, Chillie was the bus driver. He’d make the personal phone calls or meet after work in the bar to sell the work; he got the submittals together, ordered the material, got the glaziers together, ran the jobs and billed the jobs out with a single invoice. He did it all, got it done, and put a sense of urgency to it. They were HIS jobs, and you knew it. Get with the program, or get out of the way…NOW.

Effective leadership in business changes. Today, the contract glazing business seems like it’s more about risk, complicated construction techniques, effective teambuilding, division of responsibility, sophisticated decision-making, pay requests and pursuit of accounts receivable.

The urgent, personal "handshake is your bond" sales methods, dictatorial ‘Mad Men’ authority style of management, and singular do-it-all aspects of the business have given way to market analysis, constant price-shopping, CAD, BIM, endless transmittals and resubmittals, emails, and multiple responsibilities by team members.

Could Chillie adapt in today’s contract glazing world? Yes. He helped bring on computer estimating and finally understood the advantages of shop fabrication versus field fabrication. Chillie probably would have always had problems with email, though. The older folks in our business recognize the larger-than-life ‘Chillies’ who led the transition from the plate glass business of the 20th Century into the modern, technical 21st Century. Let’s appreciate those who paved the way for us in the industry today and let’s learn from them.

Leadership is a gift that few have naturally, or can develop. Decide now that you’ll become the leader, and make the difference for your organization. Chillie made the difference for Bacon & Van Buskirk, and did it for decades.

“Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.” — General George Patton

Rod Van Buskirk is the third-generation owner of Bacon & Van Buskirk Glass Co., with locations in Champaign and Springfield, Ill. A past NGA Chairman, Rod looks quarterly at the industry from the middle of nowhere, steals ideas from anyone he can and pretends to know what he’s talking about. Rod invites your comments as you are certainly smarter than he is.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, March 17, 2014

I think it’s pretty obvious that I am a very big “support the industry” sort of guy. I believe that the stronger our industry is as a whole, the better it is for all. I believe the industry support—especially in the past year or so—has been great, but it needs to be better. We need more participation at all levels, big and small. So if you are not coming to events like BEC or GlassBuild America, you are not only hurting yourself, but hurting the industry, too. So thank you to all who are involved. To those who are not, I’d love to engage in a conversation with you on why not, and get you on board.

Elsewhere…

  • This week, it’s the first of two parts from the BEC event in Las Vegas. The kickoff to the event is the technical meeting, and in a change from the past, the meeting brought in a few speakers to mix up the normal committee-style agenda. All three speakers were excellent, and the presentation from Jim Benney of NFRC had potential to explode into a major debate, which I found refreshing since I honestly thought most people had given up questioning why things are the way they are. Kudos to Chuck Knickerbocker of TGP for making the session really special.
  • Seen at the conference: Attitudes were VERY positive about the current market at the Sunday night reception. It was great to see Joe Erb from Quanex, no one more welcoming than him. I also saw for the first time in many years Greg DiVona of Prelco. That was cool to catch up. Chatted with Steve Cohen of Schott and hung for a few minutes with the Argentinian heart throb Hernan Gil of Global Security Glazing. Plus, for one split-second I did see one of my favorites, Cameron Scripture, from Viracon. He’s so popular now I think I have to make an appointment for the next reception. Last but certainly not least, it was great to see the awesome pairing of Jan Rogan and Joanne Funyak of PPG. They, as always, are awesome. 
  • Next week, I’ll recap the rest of the event including the two panel sessions that I am honored to be moderating. To be on stage with the folks on these panels is mind blowing to me. These are really sharp, talented folks who are all huge assets to their companies and the industry. 
  • I just finished the second best “inside story” business book ever, “Hatching Twitter” by Nick Bilton. This was a fantastic read and one that gives great insights into how a startup works, how boards can be seriously dysfunctional and how some ideas just connect when others don’t. The inside stories told were amazing, and how this author got access to the stories has to be a massive coup. In any case, want a great business nonfiction read? This is it. The best of all time remains “The Disney War” by James Stewart. That book will be almost impossible to top; this one came close.
  • Last this week, March Madness is here. Once upon a time I would not miss a second of the action. But as I’ve grown older and busier, it does not have the same draw for me. I won’t even fill out a bracket this year, which is pretty unbelievable to those who know me. In reality, I am getting more and more like that with all sports. Between the priorities of real life taking precedence, and being soured on the expense/salary/cost model of major sports, it’s just not important to me like it used to be. 

Read on for links of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Researchers working in the windows unit of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Building Technologies Department are perhaps the luckiest people in the window and glass industry. Not only is the view stellar—the various lab buildings are nestled high in the Berkeley Hills, overlooking San Francisco, the Bay, and the iconic Golden Gate Bridge—the work coming out of LBNL’s Building Technologies Department is paving the way for the future of energy-efficient buildings and windows.

LBNL’s Windows and Envelope Materials Group, led by Steve Selkowitz, hosted attendees of the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance 2014 Winter Conference at the beautiful lab site last week, for a guided tour of the various window activities. LBNL has done work in the window industry for more than 30 years, collaborating with industry to “make windows smarter at the level of the window; make windows smarter at the level of the home [or building],” Selkowitz said during the tour.

LBNL conducts a wide range of research, development and performance testing with the goal of converting “windows from net energy losers to net zero, and then becoming energy suppliers to buildings,” according to the group’s resource guide.

At the lab campus, the LBNL windows group operates a number of test facilities, including: the Advanced Facades Testbed; Mobile Window Thermal Test Facility; and the Quantitative Infrared Thermography Facility. However, the main attraction of the LBNL window facilities tour was FlexLab, or Facility for Low Energy eXperiments in Buildings.

According to LBNL officials, the FlexLab will allow users to:

  • Conduct focused research or product development on single components or whole-building systems integration
  • Replace any building system such as exterior building envelopes, windows and shading systems, lights, HVAC, energy control systems, roofs and skylights, or interior components such as furniture, partitions and raised floors.

The lab, which will be operational later this year, contains four 600-square-foot test beds, including one that rotates. Because nearly every building component of the test bed can be replaced, a designer or building owner could essentially create a project mock-up to test every aspect of building energy performance, from HVAC to daylighting. Individual product manufacturers, or industry groups, could use the facilities to test performance of a range of products in varying situations.

“FlexLab embodies everything we’ve learned over the last 30 years,” Selkowitz said.

Visiting the lab was fascinating. However, the real excitement will be watching how activities at LBNL, particularly in FlexLab, pave the way for better and better energy efficiency in windows and whole buildings.

Devlin is editor of Glass Magazine. Write her at kdevlin@glass.org.

Monday, March 10, 2014

It’s a milestone post for me this week. But before I get to that, it’s funny that a subject I have written a ton about over the years hit the news again this past week. Once again we talk about the adventures of LEED. It’s been known for a while that Ohio was looking to ban the LEED green building rating system. This past week the Ohio State Senate passed a resolution asserting that LEED should not be used on state buildings. And lately, there’s been a mobilization of groups striking back against LEED's structure and its biases against certain industries. I hate the overall thought of banning, but if it can force some change somewhere down the line, I am all for it. In the end, I will be stunned if the state follows all the way through. If they do, it could truly open the landscape for better systems.

Elsewhere…

  • At the IGMA meeting this week, Julie Schimmelpenningh gave an updated presentation on safety glass that continues to strike a chord. We have the technology and innovation to do more with protective glazing; it’s time we really push that envelope to its furthest point. There are factions in our industry that make too many excuses for why we can’t do things, and it just hurts us more than you realize. 
  • If you missed this presentation, I believe Julie is giving it, or some resemblance of it, at BEC next week during the technical committee meetings. If you were in any way, shape or form interested in advancing our world, this would be a session to attend. BEC kicks off next Sunday. So my blog for next week will have some of that flavor to it. I'm looking forward to a really strong event.
  • Congrats to C.R. Laurence on their latest news of opening up a super center in Denver. No question that company continues to press all of the right buttons as it pertains to some of their hires over the last year, new product development and now expansions. 
  • Once again it's time for the most significant honor in our industry to be bestowed. The Glass Magazine Awards are now accepting nominations. This is the time where you can throw some recognition towards the people, the projects and the products that truly make our industry great. The fact that I got to work with a few past winners, notably the great John McGee of Binswanger Glass, is something I am really proud of. 
  • With this post, I hit a pretty mind blowing landmark. This marks the 500th entry on the blog since it started in 2005. I simply can’t believe it. Looking back, so much has changed since I started this adventure. The industry is so different. Some players have changed pretty dramatically since then, and my approach to this blog has evolved as well. The one constant is that it's still great therapy for me, and it’s still an honor to communicate with the industry the way I do. Thank you for continuing to read and comment both publicly and through e-mail. I am sincerely grateful.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Last week, I experienced firsthand the incredible abilities of glass at the extreme—specifically, a glass floor 1,353 feet in the air, and a fire-rated glass assembly quite literally maintaining its cool in the face of 2,000-degree temperatures.

Vetrotech Saint-Gobain hosted a group of building industry professionals and press for a two-day product launch and educational program, which I’m going to refer to simply as an “extreme glass” event. The event began at the top of the Willis Tower (formerly, the Sears Tower) in Chicago, with a Vetrotech product launch reception and a visit to “The Ledge,” all-glass boxes cantilevered about 4 feet from the building.

Willis Tower

The glass is comprised of three layers of ½-inch, low-iron, tempered and laminated glass. The floor also features a sacrificial tempered glass layer on the walking surface. The glass boxes of “The Ledge” are designed to retract into the building for cleaning and maintenance.

The original Sears Tower architect, SOM, designed the ledge, with structural glass designer Halcrow Yolles. MTH Industries completed the installation of the 1,500-pound glass panels.

On the second day of this “extreme glass” event, the group visited the Underwriters Laboratory fire testing location just outside of Chicago. We were given a tour of UL’s building materials lab that concluded with a viewing of the fire test for Vetrotech’s Contraflam 120 in a corner arrangement.

The fire test chamber starts at room temperature and reaches 1000 degrees within five minutes. At the conclusion of the 2-hour test, the temperature will be closer to 2100 degrees. The Contraflam product consists of two or more sheets of toughened safety glass with a transparent intumescent gel interlayer that reacts when exposed to fire.

As the interior of the test furnace rises, the interior tempered glass lite breaks. The interlayer begins to cloud and bubble as it is exposed to the fiery temperatures. But the exterior lite of glass remains safe to the touch—about 100 degrees in this case. Pictured above is the interior of the furnace and Vetrotech's Kevin Frisone, sales and marketing manager, North America, touching the exterior of the glass during the test.

Thanks to Vetrotech for the extreme glass tour. I continue to be amazed at the possibilities of glass products, particularly in these extreme situations.

Devlin is editor of Glass Magazine. Write her at kdevlin@glass.org.

Monday, March 3, 2014

We have a severe labor shortage in our industry when it comes to glaziers. I don’t think I am telling anyone anything new here. It feels like every company, big and small, is looking for folks to install. But we also have a severe shortage in another part of our world: project managers. It is mind-blowing to me how many companies are looking for PMs right now. In fact, I would say the need for project managers might be surpassing the need for glaziers, based on the fact that companies are adapting to their field labor shortages by buying installation equipment (everything on the floor at GlassBuild America last year sold out) or pushing more unitized systems or some other approach. People are making things work. On the project management side, it's not that easy and the solutions are not at the forefront.  Eventually, this industry has to address these issues, because it’s only getting worse.

Elsewhere…

  • Good news! The Construction Backlog Index from the Associated Builders & Contractors has hit a post-recession high, and it's also tracking almost 4 percent better than this time a year ago. I also believe that the weather-related slow start to 2014 (starts in January were dreadful) will eventually result in a mini-boom thanks to delays and pent-up demand.  Staying positive here…
  • Speaking of positive, a few weeks ago dynamic glass manufacturer View was featured in a Fox Business Channel report. This was a really nice piece that put not only View and the dynamic glass world in a great light, but our industry as a whole as well.  Getting solid traditional media coverage is crucial to our messaging of innovation.  Congrats to the team at View on getting this one.
  • The celebrity keynote speaker at BEC next month is Ron Jaworski. This week, Jaworski made news when he said heralded quarterback Johnny Manziel would not get picked in the first three rounds of the NFL draft if he was making the choice. The reason this is news is most experts think Manziel may be one of the first few players picked overall.  Jaworski is known for making news-making statements, so I am wondering if at BEC he will do the same. I could see him saying, “Low-E Glass is the past; I’m going with something else.” Or, “no aluminum for me; only vinyl for my curtain walls.” And our world would go crazy.
  • This week, there was an auction for 168 licenses to run a cab in New York City.  The low bid was $650,000, and the high was $965,000. For ONE cab. That just blows my mind.  Not being from New York or knowing the city that well, I had no idea that a million-dollar investment in a cab was such a good one. That is craziness!
  • Last this week, can someone tell Mother Nature we’ve had enough? What a winter this has been. And supposedly forecasts are calling for a cooler than normal spring and summer. I joked on Twitter that this winter is like what the folks in Minnesota experience every year, and my pal Garret Henson from Viracon noted it’s even a bad one for them, being the fourth coldest on record there. Now when it's even stupid cold in Minnesota, you KNOW it’s a bad winter!

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, February 24, 2014

To me there’s one trend that is dominating our industry, and it's probably not what you think. It’s a product line that fabricators are seeing as a great path to bottom-line success. It isn't anything to do with energy efficiency. That trend is major and constantly growing, with the utter importance of energy improving products on our industry receiving coverage here and throughout the media. But right now, that’s not the product segment that is seemingly growing at an insane clip. The hot mover is actually decorative glazing.

One look into the current issue of Glass Magazine tells the story. In the Top Glass Fabricators Products section, 13 of the 22 profiles are decorative related, with only three related to energy. Decorative glass allows fabricators to easily diversify business and help the bottom line. Add in smart suppliers—both from the paints and machinery side—and the entry into that world is not daunting at all.

With that said, do I wish that the pages of Glass Magazine were filled with new energy-related and innovative products? Sure. And I believe they exist, but they’re not as sexy from a promotional side as decorative, and the supply chain from the energy side is not as streamlined into the fabricator like the decorative suppliers are. Overall for me, I have been involved in decorative before it became hip, so it’s pretty amazing to see how it's absolutely taken off.

Elsewhere…

  • As I am known to do, I studied the ads in the current GM issue as well. Props to DFI for their very creative bridge ad. It’s memorable and different. And for many, makes us feel like we’re all in this adventure together.
  • Last week I talked about the BEC Technical meeting. This week, here is just a quick note on the overall conference scheduled for next month. A very strong agenda is in place; kudos to the excellent Jon Kimberlain of Dow Corning and his committee that put it together. From a glazier perspective, you just need to look at the afternoon session of day one and see the value in pieces on sealing, installation equipment, OSHA, codes and more. Day two features the celebrity talk with former Philly Eagles quarterback and current ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski. “Jaws” should be fun since he brings a boatload of energy to everything he does.
  • One of the former celeb keynotes at BEC was Mike Eurizone, the captain of the U.S. Olympic hockey team in 1980. He mentioned in his presentation that, if his game winning shot went just one inch to the left, he’d be painting bridges in Boston now and not speaking to a bunch of glass people. I thought of him when the U.S. Women’s hockey team missed out on a gold medal by an inch when their empty net attempt hit the post. Heartbreaking for them. And yes, since both the U.S. Men and U.S. Women both lost to Canada, I will be singing “O Canada” in public, and on video in the coming months. Congrats to all of my friends up north on the wins!
  • One of those friends is Rich Porayko, who picked up a fantastic interim gig this past week as head of the Canadian Glass Association. Rich is a class act and excellent man, and the CGA tapped him to guide them through the process of finding a permanent executive director. I am confident Rich will do a great job for that organization and be a major asset to the new management that comes in. Plus I am jealous. I mean he’s running an organization for the entire country! That’s just awesome. Remember us little folk, eh Rich?

Read on for links and video of the week.

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Our industry is full of glass experts. And I have heard those experts respond to a tremendous range of questions regarding glass and glazing. What is the thermal performance of this window? Will this insulating glass unit experience condensation in the winter? Can this product withstand hurricane-force winds? And these experts are working to answer even more complicated questions, like what is the cradle-to-grave life cycle of this glass unit?

While glass experts field these more practical product questions on a regular basis, I wonder how often they receive perhaps the most rudimentary query about glass: Why is glass transparent? Why does molten sand turn into a transparent, solid material after cooling? And, that leads to other curious questions. If visible light and heat can pass through glass, are ultra-violet rays allowed through as well? Can you get a sunburn through glass?

A recent TED-Ed talk by Mark Miodownik answers these questions in an animated video. Perhaps it will prove a useful educational tool for any curious customers out there.

Devlin is editor of Glass Magazine. Write her at kdevlin@glass.org.

Monday, February 17, 2014

I found it funny when Katy Devlin looked back to 2004 in her blog last week, because I have been having the same discussions—looking back 10 years and realizing how so much has changed in the glass industry. If you told me then what our world would look like now I would have never, EVER believed you. I’d be more apt to believe in flying cars and a Jetsons-like community than the different industry landscape we have now. It's only 10 years, but so much has changed. Think back 10 years and remember how different things were—what the products were, who the suppliers were, who the voices of the industry were. What a different world.  

Now, think where will we be in 2024. I’m actually trying to avoid that thought; I’m still thrown by thinking about the past to now! 

Elsewhere…

  • Guardian released a new app recently with a focus on glass performance for windows. It is a very sharp and impressive tool. It's a great reference and training piece too, so if you have some new people, you need to download this and have those folks devour it. It also paints our industry in a very positive light, which we always need.  Kudos to the team at Guardian who led the charge on this one. To download, search your app store for Guardian Window InSight.
  • One comment I receive at least once a week is, “I didn’t know about that.” Well in our industry, there are two events that can help solve that dilemma: GlassBuild America in the fall and BEC next month. And speaking of BEC, you really should attend the technical meeting the night before the event opens. Chuck Knickerbocker of TGP will lead it, and he’s a tour de force. Thanks to him and his team’s effort, his session next month is loaded with tons of info and three strong presentations: one from Jon McFarland of Wheaton-Sprague, "Benefits of BIM & Curtain Wall"; one that brought the house down at GANA’s Annual Conference by Julie Schimmelpenningh, "School Security & Safety"; and one from Jim Benney of NFRC, "Codes and the NFRC," which will be helpful to attend to know and understand what will affect you and your business going forward. Plain and simple, if you are a contract glazier, you need to be there. Plus, the rest of the event has excellent presentations planned as well, which I’ll get to next week. It is worth the time and budget.
  • Olympic hockey is so enjoyable, but now there’s even more on the line for me. Thanks to a bet with my friends at RavenBrick—proud Canadians—if Canada beats the U.S. and wins gold, I will have to stand up in a restaurant and sing “O Canada.” But if the U.S. wins, they will have to do the same with the “Star Spangled Banner.” I don’t think I can lose on this bet: If the U.S. wins I am thrilled; if Canada wins, I will have a blast belting out “O Canada” and may even mix some of the French version in, too.
  • The largest solar power plant in the world opened up in the California-Nevada desert last week. This project is an important milestone for anyone who cares about the future of solar energy. It has been an adventure getting here as it has been slowed by lawsuits and worries about the effect on the environment. That conundrum has been interesting to watch since the same people who are against fossil fuels and are pro sola, have lined up against this plant because of its effect on the wildlife, etc. Regardless, this project could continue to renew and improve efforts to get more solar energy going.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, February 10, 2014

My first major assignment when I joined Glass Magazine as an intern in 2004 was to provide research assistance for The World of Glass—a detailed database of float glass plants operating worldwide, which was eventually published as a map and chart in the August 2005 issue. For me, this proved to be a challenging, fascinating, and at times inspiring introduction to the complex and multifaceted glass industry.

That 2005 World of Glass feature, began, “The furnaces burn day and night to form fiery pools of melted sand that transform into flat ribbons of glass as they float down long beds of molten tin.” It’s from this fiery origin that we get every window, mirror, windshield, glass shower door. And as such, any shift at the primary glass level reverberates throughout the entire industry.

During my 10 years at Glass Magazine, our industry has been rocked by a global recession, transformed by an accelerating green building movement, and altered by a growth explosion in emerging markets. So, it was with great interest that I returned to the state of the global primary glass market in the January/February issue.

I was struck, first and foremost, by the extent of the damage the float glass industry has suffered due to the extended market downturn. It is no surprise that plants were shuttered, and lines put on hold. However, the extent of the capacity reductions—estimated at 25 percent in North America alone—was startling.

Also impressive was the extensive investment in emerging markets throughout the course of the downturn. While North American and European plants were closing, lines in Brazil, Russia, India and China were coming online.

In the in-depth feature, “Brave New World of Glass,” we present these major changes at the primary level, along with profiles of the leading global players. The market shifts will trickle down to every player in the industry, and businesses need to be ready and aware. But as Scott Thomsen, the former president of Guardian’s Glass Group, says in the article, “after experiencing prolonged economic downturns in North America and Europe, there are no challenges, only opportunities.”

Welcome to the new World of Glass.

Devlin is editor of Glass Magazine. Write her at kdevlin@glass.org.

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